We tend to think that the standard keyboard that comes with a computer is the only option and that if we find it difficult to use, or cannot use it at all, we cannot use a computer.
In fact there are many alternatives to a standard keyboard. Some of them are shown below.
GoldTouch Adjustable Keyboard 1
For some people who are touch-typists, intensive or prolonged use of a standard keyboard can lead to discomfort and even quite serious upper limb disorders such as repetitive strain injury (RSI).
Using a keyboard that does not force our hands to adopt an unnatural position whilst typing can help alleviate some early stage symptoms or prevent injury occurring.
Cherry G84 compact keyboard and separate numeric pad.
The vast majority of us rarely use the numberpad. Instead we stretch our hand out to the right to use our mouse, whilst the numberpad occupies the area of our desk which is by far the safest and most comfortable for mouse use.
One way around this is to use a compact keyboard. Compact keyboards look very similar to the keyboard layout on a laptop computer. They take up a lot less space than a normal keyboard, can be more easily positioned and are often suited to single handed users. And unlike a normal keyboard, they can also fit between the arms of a standard wheelchair.
Separate numberpads are available which can be positioned to the left or right of the keyboard as needed.
The Cherry Compact keyboard with optional keyguard
Many people cannot hold their hands over a keyboard for any length of time, or accidentally press more than one key at a time when typing. For these people a keyguard might help.
A keyguard is a rigid plate with holes in it that coincide with the keys in the keyboard below. Keyguards are available for the standard computer keyboard and a range of specialist keyboards. They fit snugly over the keyboard but can easily be removed.
It can often be easier and cheaper to purchase a keyboard and guard together rather than get one to fit a specific keyboard.
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